Should You Go Viral? October 27, 2017June 29, 2016 by Locus Visual Arts “Let’s make this post go viral!” For plenty of website owners and online marketers, the idea of going viral is equal to online success. But is it guaranteed? Quite simply, no. It’s tempting to produce content with the sole purpose of making it go viral. But 1) the odds are greater that it won’t happen, and 2) if it does, chances are it won’t stay viral for long. The audience is a highly fickle creature. The attention it gives you only lasts as long as the time it takes for the next billion viral posts to appear on its feed. And there goes your painstakingly created ‘viral’ content. If you’re lucky, your post will be the Internet’s sweetheart for about a few weeks, but that’s it. Afterwards, everyone will have moved on to the next post more swiftly than a certain musician can change boyfriends. Attention Vs. Respect Everyone online is fighting for attention. But attention is short-lived, and it doesn’t guarantee brand success. Instead, it’s much more productive to create content that gives you and your audience a good venue for engagement. This improves your chances of users connecting with your brand and products. And better connection means respect for your brand, which translates into brand authority. Respect isn’t won overnight. It’s not always achieved with loud fanfare. It’s not easy to achieve either. But once you earn your audience’s respect for your brand, your competitors will have a much harder time enticing your loyal followers away from you – even if they produce viral content. Even more, when a business tries to produce content that may go viral, savvy users can and will easily spot the desperation. Nothing is sadder than seeing someone try so hard to get attention and fail. And that will never generate the respect you want for your brand. “But it has 16 million views!” It’s true. Viral content, like a number of popular cat videos, may make it to several million views or even more. That’s great if you’re only monetizing your content views and clicks. But again, give it a few months, and nobody remembers it anymore. That’s because viral content tends to feel like advertisements. They catch on quickly, they spread easily, but are just as easily forgotten. They don’t make a lasting impression. Valuable content, however, tends to be more low-key. It doesn’t always come in with a bang. But it tends to get opened and digested better by those who view it. And it’s doesn’t feel throwaway like an advertisement. Also, predicting whether your content will go viral or not is difficult, considering that a good number of viral videos are fluff. You wouldn’t want your brand to be associated with fluff, so you might as well work at producing content that’s useful to your audience. It’s easier to guarantee that there will be viewers who’ll appreciate your output. Quality vs. Quantity This isn’t to say that getting plenty of views, Likes, Shares, and Follows are a bad thing. But if you’re creating content for your brand, it’s better to do so with the intent of providing value than just getting instant mass attention. When you offer high-quality and useful content , you are more likely to attract people who can appreciate the importance of what you have to say. You get bookmarked and shared for future reference. And because people know that they can rely on you and your brand to provide them with information that can add value to their lives, they’ll return to you, perhaps even bring along new viewers who will also appreciate your content. So, don’t just aim to go viral. Aim to produce useful content instead, which could go viral. Maybe you’ll get a million views, or maybe you’ll get a thousand. Either way, your viewers will keep returning to you for more, not just share your content and forget about it. And that is quality virality. If you want more advice on creating high-quality content for your brand, call us today. Our Dallas online marketing company will be happy to help you out with your free first consultation.